April 29, 2010

Jackie’s Got a Brand New Chef

Posted in food restaurants, musings, silver spring businesses tagged , , , , , , , at 10:22 am by silversprung

We stopped by Jackie’s the other weekend and sampled food from their new chef, Diana Davila. Actually, we had no idea when we showed up that the chef and menu would be new, but our very very verbose waiter laid it all out for us.

She’s new to Jackie’s, but not to the restaurant world, having started cooking in her family’s restaurant in Chicago. Our server idolized the woman — he told us all about her history, her energy, drive, creativity, he even extolled her professionalism in the kitchen and her personality (yes, it was a very long “welcome to Jackie’s” speech.) It was a little weird, but we rolled with it. Read the rest of this entry »

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April 16, 2010

Bee Saga: silversprung Wins!

Posted in musings tagged at 3:16 pm by silversprung

After reading up on the options for dealing with our carpenter bees, I ended up spraying that hornet and wasp spray into the holes at night and now they’re dead. End of story.

Our other options were to buy fresh wood, place it nearby and hope they leave the old nest in favor of better wood, but apparently we missed the season window for that. And if we tried to plug up the holes while they were gone, they would simply create new holes.

So the bees are gone. The End.

April 15, 2010

Bee Saga Part Deux

Posted in musings, photos tagged , , , , at 10:32 am by silversprung

Thanks to Al and JCphilatemap for commenting on my last post about our bees. Because of their tips, I figured out that our two bee friends are, in fact, one male and one female carpenter bee. From wikipedia:

Male eastern carpenter bees are curious and will investigate anyone, including humans, that comes near their nests. The curiosity is often interpreted as aggressiveness; however, the males are only aggressive to other male carpenter bees. They do not have stingers and cannot cause any real harm.

Okay, so that explains his interest in me and this next bit explains the hovering… (but mating with birds?!)

Males spend many hours guarding their territory against other males, hovering about the nests for hours on sunny days. They sometimes attempt to mate with other insects or small birds.

A weird trick to try on a male (that I will NOT be trying…)

An interesting trick to use to “move” a male carpenter bee out of the way is to pick up a small pebble (roughly the size of the bee), then toss it past the bee. They will attempt to chase it, distracting them for a few moments, long enough for a human to get by.

I decided there must be a nest for these two somewhere in our backyard. The females literally bore holes into wood to create their nests. So I started looking around, and BINGO! (Picture after the jump) Read the rest of this entry »

April 14, 2010

A Tribute to Town Mascots (Penguins Not Included)

Posted in musings, photos tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 10:01 am by silversprung

I received an inordinate amount of feedback on my post about Silver Spring’s penguin mascot.  (To readers in far away places — see what I mean? I even managed to humor a seasoned local blogger with my naivete on penguins. I’m just happy he’s reading.)

So I decided to dedicate today’s post to all the other town mascots out there in North America (I’m not even going to start on all those UK soccer mascots, there’s one for every single team and town.) So bring us your weird, your senseless, your disturbing.

See photos below (and yes, it was fun collecting these.)

Bow Island, Alberta’s Pinto MacBean

“Designed by Jane Osborne and unveiled to the public in 1992, Pinto MacBean was created to promote tourism and signifies the importance of the dry edible bean industry to the area.”

Um, okay. Regardless, I want to own this printed on a t-shirt. (Note: contact Bow Island tourism board.)

Read the rest of this entry »

April 13, 2010

Goldberg’s Answers My Bagel Prayers

Posted in blogs, food restaurants, recommendations, silver spring businesses tagged , , , , , , at 10:18 am by silversprung

As an original New York-area transplant, I’d long given up hope of finding a decent bagel in D.C. Sure, a few places in downtown D.C. carried H&H (Port of Piraeus, some place near 18th and Columbia that closed a few years ago, and I can’t remember where else) but those H&H’s were never fresh.

So I was delighted to read on Silver Spring, Singular that Goldberg’s Bagels was coming to The Spring! (Take that, Bagel Feud!)

One sesame with veggie cream cheese later and I’m hooked. Bethesda Bagels never did it for me (not dense enough) but this was the real deal. Can’t wait to try more.

Now if I could just find a decent diner nearby. Any suggestions?

April 12, 2010

It’s on, Bees

Posted in musings tagged , , , at 10:33 am by silversprung

We’re so happy to be in our new house. Our neighbors are welcoming. Our friends enjoy stopping by. But there are two Silver Spring residents that seem to be awfully pissed off at us for moving in.

Those would be two GIANT, dive-bombing bees.

At first, it was just an occasional bee sighting, but that’s morphed into full-on harassment. I’m not kidding. Within minutes of sitting outside, we hear the buzzing begin, look up, and there they are, circling overhead. One seems to have taken a particular liking (or disliking…) to me in particular. The bee is partial to hovering a foot from my face (and I SWEAR I can see it giving me the eye , or “eyes”) then rearing back and and flying full force into me, making a smacking sound and scaring me senseless.

Well bees, it was nice knowing you. Read the rest of this entry »

April 11, 2010

Delinquent Blogger

Posted in musings at 7:01 pm by silversprung

Whoops!! There went an entire week without blog entries. I could blame the nice weather, taxes, visitors, take your pick. It was a busy week. But I’m back and have lots to share. Thanks for your patience, sprungers!

April 2, 2010

Drink of the Day: 2

Posted in musings tagged , , , , at 11:33 am by silversprung

Here is the second installment of my Drink of the Day series. This one was inspired by the welcome sunshine and all the nice weather forecast for this weekend. I’ve made this for bbq’s as well as indoor dinner parties. It’s cool and refreshing, but has one cooking step: the simple-to-make simple syrup.

Lemon Vodka Granita

It’s cool. It’s delicious. It has booze in it. You can’t really go wrong. Granita is an Italian dessert of sorta-frozen water, sugar, and flavorings. Unlike an Italian Ice or a snow cone, this is supposed to have a slushy, eat-with-a-spoon consistency. Perfect for hot days.

Due to all the cooling time this recipe requires, it’s a make-ahead drink.

Read the rest of this entry »

April 1, 2010

Cherry Block

Posted in events, musings at 3:53 pm by silversprung

Just wanted to call your attention to this Saturday’s “Big Cherry Block Party” in Silver Spring.